I’ve realised that I haven’t written on this blog for over a year … what can I say … I’ve been busy! I have been writing though … just not here!

In November I took part in the NaNoWriMo challenge (National Novel Writing Month). It does what it says; you aim to write a novel in a month. I have never attempted it before but actually did it, well I almost did it. By the end of my month the novel wasn’t quite complete but an extra week and I had finished the first draft.

I learnt that planning makes things a whole lot easier. I had plenty of ideas of how the Compassion series was going end but hadn’t really focused them. Before I dedicated a whole month to writing, I took a fair few hours to plan out what was going to happen in each chapter. It came down to working out place, plot and people for each portion!

Then I began to write. I posted my progress on Instagram mostly to keep me motivated but found that watching the word count grow was actually a really good encouragement.

Yet again, life took over a bit and the manuscript sat unedited on my computer for a quite few months. I was busy with releasing a children’s illustrated book (created under the pseudonym Lizzy Lovely) and began working on a second, I was spending time on another blog I write with a friend and I was really enjoying painting again … just generally being creative.

I wasn’t feeling any urgency to complete what I had began. That is a sad place to be having spent all the time and effort to get it so close to completion. I know that all you starter finishers out there will find that really frustrating. I think I did too but thanks to some incredibly timely encouragement from someone who had just finished reading ‘The Compassion Prize’, things are back on track.

A kind word and a message of affirmation changed it all.

‘Such an engaging read … like one of those books I shout at whilst reading. You have a gift :)’

Words are powerful things. Who are you going to encourage today? You could send a text, make a friendly comment on one of their posts, put pen to paper and write an actual letter or card, … or even do a review for a book you thought was good.  You don’t know what it might do for the person on the receiving end!

Watch this space for The Compassion Fire … out very soon!!